Global Perspectives on Cervical Cancer: Achieving Targets, Overcoming Challenges, and Fostering Collaborations

Jan 15, 2024 | News, Oncology

The global impact of cervical cancer is staggering, with approximately 604,000 new cases recorded in 2020, resulting in 342,000 deaths – 90% of which occurred in low- and middle-income countries (LMICs) (Source: WHO).

Estimated age-standardized incidence rates (World) in 2020, cervix uteri, females, all ages; World average is 13.3 per 100 000; Source: Globocan

This inequity can be attributed to many factors, such as economic, social, and cultural circumstances. Recognising the need for comprehensive strategies, many nations are developing programs that address various aspects of the global health supply chain. Thus far, 194 countries have committed to the ambitious targets set through the 2020 Global Strategy to accelerate the elimination of cervical cancer:

  • 90% of girls fully vaccinated with human papillomavirus (HPV) vaccine by age 15 years;
  • 70% of women are screened by 35 years and again by 45 years;
  • 90% of women identified with cervical disease receive treatment.

To achieve these targets, prevention and screening are elevated in the Ministries of Health’s agendas and progress has already been made:

  • As of today, 140 countries have introduced the HPV vaccine into national immunization programmes, including countries with large populations and cervical cancer burdens such as Bangladesh and Indonesia.
  • In Nigeria, for example, the HPV vaccine was introduced to the routine immunization programme, starting with a single-dose campaign in October 2023 that aims to vaccinate 7.7 million girls – the largest number in a single round of HPV vaccination in the region. The first phase of introduction has rolled out in 13 states and as of the beginning of November, more than 3 million girls aged 9–14 years had already been vaccinated. Phase 2 HPV introduction planning and preparation is underway and will focus on the next 21 states.
  • Since the implementation of its national HPV vaccination program in 2011, Rwanda has achieved 96% coverage through multi-year school-based campaigns. Such achievement is one of the highest in the world.
  • The global HPV vaccination coverage of girls who received at least one dose of HPV vaccine has increased to 21% in 2022. If this rate of progress is maintained the world would be on track to meet the 2030 target to make HPV vaccines available to all girls everywhere.

If the 90-70-90 targets are achieved by 2030 in LMICs, the anticipated results are far-reaching: a substantial 42% reduction in cervical cancer incidence by 2045 and an estimated 300,000 cervical cancer deaths could be prevented by 2030, and over 14 million by 2070.

Despite massive progress in awareness, prevention, and early detection, there remains an urgent gap in the patient pathway: access to treatment. Procuring high-quality and affordable medicines, including chemotherapy medications, has been a challenge since their first availability in the 1950s.

To address this issue and guarantee the availability of affordable, quality medicines, collective efforts are essential. Here are some actionable steps:

  • Strengthen the healthcare system infrastructure: Invest in diagnostic equipment, treatment facilities, and healthcare personnel training while developing guidelines for diagnosis and treatment;
  • Implement financial assistance programs: Reduce out-of-pocket expenses for individuals seeking cervical cancer treatment;
  • Streamline registration processes: Expedite the registration of medicines with significant benefits over those with limited benefits. Implement regulatory harmonization allowing for centralized approval for drug registration in multiple countries or mutual recognition once a drug has been registered in certain countries;
  • Promote public-private partnerships: Foster collaborations between countries’ legislations, procuring entities, international non-governmental organisations, suppliers, and other stakeholders to tackle these challenges together.

How can NCDconnect contribute to the global fight against cervical cancer?

Collaboration is the cornerstone of the battle against cervical cancer, and NCDconnect is dedicated to this principle. Serving as a disease-focused platform, NCDconnect provides access to non-communicable diseases (NCD) medicines, medical supplies, and diagnostics, including those for cervical cancer (carboplatin, cisplatin, and paclitaxel). Our ability to offer such solutions is rooted in the strong relationships we cultivated within the global health supply chain ecosystem. By bridging the gaps between buyers and suppliers, we aim to ensure that individuals living with cervical cancer can access the treatments they need.

For inquiries and to explore how we can mutually support each other in this fight, feel free to reach out to us at

Access NCDconnect, spread awareness, and let’s end this preventable disease. 

And to stay informed on the latest updates and news from NCDconnect, follow us on LinkedIn.

Feature Image Credit: Tyrone DeJesus